"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them, at least don't hurt them." - The Dalai Lama
Stop Tolerating Intolerable People
Workplace Bullies with their patterns of harassment, emotional abuse, and targeted aggression can be found hiding in the best of law firms and corporations. Abusive and intimidating behavior that is cause for immediate dismissal in a subordinate is frequently overlooked when exhibited by a partner, "rainmaker", corporate leader, or protected "sacred cow." Stress remains the number one injury in the workplace, and yet excuses are made for these weak but powerful people who are known as the workplace bullies.
What is workplace bullying?
It is pattern of workplace harassment, emotional abuse, and targeted aggression. It is not a one-time, isolated incident.
Who is the victim?
Experts tell us that the weakest victim is not the targeted person. It is management, with all the power and money to do something about it, but lacking the courage and character to make it stop. Employees and candidates know where the workplace bullies reside. Law firms and corporations who support this type of behavior are vulnerable to negative recruiting, high turnover and rejection from candidates.
Take a stand against abusive behavior. Promote a bully-free workplace.
What can you do about it?
1. Educate yourself ... Start by reading about it.
- Abuse of Power: Dealing with a Bully Lawyer
- Lawyer Bullies: What to do about it - American Bar Association
- Bullying at Work (Legal Organizations), Coping Strategies and Health Problems
- Address Bullying Behavior Before Your Firm Gets a Black Eye
- Are Workplace Bullies Sabotaging Your Ability To Compete?
- Are you a certified As*h*le? Find out with Bob Sutton's Self-Exam ARSE
- TIME'S UP
2. Stop making excuses; stop enabling - there is no mediation for bullying.
3. Create and publish a strong zero-tolerance policy. Include a process for employees to report harassment complaints, including those caused by supervisors.
4. Investigate and remedy all unlawful harassment swiftly and effectively.
5. Train employees and supervisors to recognize conduct that is considered unlawful harassment.
6. Don't be part of the problem - don't bully or harass.
7. If someone tells you they are being harassed, believe them and do something.
8. Be supportive and recommend resources than can help.
Talk about it, deal with it, and STOP it.
California Anti-Bullying Law
Beginning January 1, 2015, AB-2053, required California employers with 50 or more employees, who conduct business in California, to include an anti-bullying component into their existing mandatory anti-harassment training for supervisors.
The component must include training and education on the prevention of "abusive conduct." Abusive conduct means conduct of an employer or employee in the workplace, with malice, that a reasonable person would find hostile, offensive, and unrelated to an employer's legitimate business interests.
Abusive conduct may include repeated infliction of verbal abuse, such as the use of derogatory remarks, insults, and epithets, verbal or physical conduct that a reasonable person would find threatening, intimidating, or humiliating, or the gratuitous sabotage or undermining of a person's work performance.
A single act shall not constitute abusive conduct, unless especially severe and egregious.